The Sunday Leader

Hong Kong snuff out Lankan hopes with 41-10 win

  • Asian 5 Nations Rugby Championship

Danushka Ranjan on his way to score Sri Lanka’s solitary try

Hong Kong demonstrated their vast superiority over Sri Lanka when they easily breezed past the hosts 41-10 in their key rugby encounter on Saturday at the picturesque Race Course Rugby Grounds in Colombo.

Hong Kong scored their points through 4 goals, 2 tries and a penalty to which Sri Lanka replied with a goal and a penalty. Hong Kong led 29-0 at half time.

The win provided Sri Lankan rugby fans with a reality check and quickly snuffed out the slim hopes of Sri Lanka somehow qualifying for the Rugby World Cup in 2015 as Asia’s third best team. Hong Kong is ranked 26th in the world and Sri Lanka is 39th.

The top three teams in Asia qualify for the World tournament and Japan are already streets ahead of their rivals in the region and South Korea – who began their campaign with a 59-3 trouncing of Sri Lanka last week -looked to have sewn up the second place. Hong Kong now appear to be the most likely third team from Asia in the World event.

Bilal Hassen leads a Sri Lankan counter offensive

The visitors did not take long to settle down and began a wave of attacking moves with forwards and the back lines engaging in a strong display of power rugby. The hosts were clearly rattled and began to commit more errors and their set-pieces were a disaster. Hong Kong scored three goals, a try and a penalty in the first half and the hosts failed to put any points on the board.

The Sri Lankans gave a better display in the second half and managed to restrict their opponents to only 12 more points to which the hosts too responded with 10 in a more closely contested half.

Despite having the advantage as hosts of the game with strong support from a partisan crowd the Lankans were never allowed to settle down into any sort of rhythm. There was an expectation that Sri Lanka, in a bid to bolster their chances, would include a couple of Fijian players who were qualified to represent Sri Lanka but this move appeared to have hit a snag because the Fijians did not take the field on Saturday.

Sri Lanka’s next game in the tournament is an away game against Japan and they end their campaign with another home game when they take on Philippines in Colombo on 17 May.

 

2 Comments for “Hong Kong snuff out Lankan hopes with 41-10 win”

  1. pradeep

    We don’t have a chance in Asia leave alone the world. Just see what a lot of money and spent on rugby and how much publicity given to this sport. If half of this is given to athletics we can produce world beaters. Cricket and rugby are played only by a few countries. But see how many times we have come first in Asian in athletics and second in the world. I cant undustand why the media is not giving much publicity to this sports. Take for instance the Junior athletic meet now going on in the sugathadasa stadium. Their are more than 3000 children participating in the event representing the whole country . So many poor families wanted to know about the results. But in Tv and news papers we will see only a foreign cricket match or a motor racing event or a rugby match. Even the media doesn’t know what is good for the country and politician are worse.

    • Kelum Sujith

      Only the Top team in Asia will get an automatic berth at RWC 2015, and the second placed team will enter a repechage with the third placed team from the Americas and will play in at home and away. The third placed team in Asia will stay at home and watch the event on TV…. :)

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